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A South Florida woman is grieving the loss of her entire fur-family – three dogs, a 15-year-old Shih Tzu named Sophie, a 10-year-old sheltie named Lancelot, and a 6-year-old mixed breed named Freeda, after the trio went for their bi-weekly trip to the groomer for baths and nail trims.
For the last three years, the pups have been picked up every other Friday by their groomer, Charliston Seixas, who took the pups to his grooming facility, The Pet Club.
On Friday, March 18, Seixas picked up the dogs, loaded them into his grooming van, and headed to the store. It would be the last time their owner, Danielle Trentin, would see them alive.
As the day wore on, Trentin became increasingly worried about her dogs. She hadn’t heard from the groomer and he hadn’t returned the dogs as usual. When she tried calling, no one answered the phone. She drove to The Pet Club and found the doors locked and the business closed. So, Trentin drove to Seixas’ home and demanded answers.
“I said, ‘Where are my dogs?’ He said, ‘Oh, I delivered them a long time ago.’ I said, ‘No, you didn’t,'” she said. “That’s when he said, ‘Oh, I forgot them at the store. Give me one minute. I’ll go there, pick them up and I’ll bring them back to you.'”
Trentin and her husband followed Seixas back to The Pet Club. The groomer went inside and immediately came back out crying. She ran inside and found nothing but empty cages.
That’s when Trentin’s husband discovered their beloved dogs inside the grooming van. All three were dead. Necropsies confirmed the family of dogs had died from heat exhaustion after being left for an unknown length of time inside the vehicle, parked just around the block from their home.
“You know what kills me? That I keep thinking, they were inside the car, asking for me. ‘Where is my mom? She is always here with us. Why is she not here saving us?'” she said. “And I just can’t sleep because of that. And I hope they can forgive me one day for not saving them.”
An investigation into the incident is ongoing. While Trentin doesn’t believe the groomer intentionally killed her dogs, she does believe he was negligent. He may face animal cruelty charges.